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  •   Nicole at food allergy pantry commented on this post about 7 hours ago
    Spent the last 2 weeks re-learning some favorite meals and snacks in #wheatfree versions. Bob's Red Mill flours have been lifesavers, moreso than when we were just using products like the chickpea flour for fun and flavor variety. Definitely a worthwhile featured brand profile for any ##customeater !
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  •   Allergy Superheroes commented on this post about 6 days ago
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  •   Allergy Superheroes commented on this post about 6 days ago
    I admit, I never thought I'd be in the top-8 group. My mantra was "at least we can eat wheat" for almost 10 years. But here I am, and I'm so glad to have the community already in place for me and other #customeaters!
    • Allergy Superheroes
      We're "lucky" that there are only 3 of the top 8 that we have to avoid in our family. We try to do top 8 free recipes when possible, but it certainly We're "lucky" that there are only 3 of the top 8 that we have to avoid in our family. We try to do top 8 free recipes when possible, but it certainly is challenging (especially with wheat and egg). Happy you found freedible, and that there are so many more resources today to help you on your journey!   More ...
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  •   Allergy Superheroes liked this post about 6 days ago
    I love that you've added recipes to the top-8 section and can't wait to give some a try. Thanks @paleosensible !
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  •   Allergy Superheroes commented on this post about 6 days ago
    Oh, it's the start to our school year (later than a lot of places, I know!), and I already managed to give my daughter allergic nuts (cashews)---on the very same day as her 504 meeting at school. Apparently my brain could only take so much allergy safety before it crashed. Lucky for us, she caught the ingredient reaction early, her hospital care was amazing, and she only missed one day of school for recovery.

    From a mom and from an HP perspective, though, this was a weird reaction: little...
    Oh, it's the start to our school year (later than a lot of places, I know!), and I already managed to give my daughter allergic nuts (cashews)---on the very same day as her 504 meeting at school. Apparently my brain could only take so much allergy safety before it crashed. Lucky for us, she caught the ingredient reaction early, her hospital care was amazing, and she only missed one day of school for recovery.

    From a mom and from an HP perspective, though, this was a weird reaction: little to no breathing/airway problems, but many other severe and whole-body symptoms. After the reaction started, I could see the rash spreading, and her eye swelling, but we were sitting and talking with each other---even laughing! I admit that I waffled on the epi; give it, and we ensure an ambulance ride and more. Because she doesn't remember her past hospital visits as a toddler, the fear of that unknown seemed to be causing her an outsized amount of anxiety. Stay at home, without corticosteroids or other treatment options (already hit with two antihistamines)? Nope. Unfortunately, this happened on a day when her allergist office nearby was closed, so that visit was out. Drive ourselves to the ER? That wait could be awhile.

    As I watched a flat red rash (but no swelling) spread all over her torso, face, and limbs and she started sneezing, we decided to head across the street to the urgent care center for observation. That worked out well; we confirmed that she wasn't in anaphylaxis, because her airways were open and her blood pressure was stable. When the rash flared more after the first antihistamine wore off, though, we were sent to the ER anyway for a steroid boost and longer observation. We went home later that night. Just a few days later, and all is well (except for my mental state!).

    Now that we're back to the school routine, I stopped to think about how she should have handled this if she were alone. When it was ongoing, I told her it was absolutely a time for her, if alone, to use an Epi-Pen because she ate the problem food. I wondered---would that EpiPen card we made this summer have told her to do that, too?

    So, I took another look; it's at that link below. The card definitely emphasizes breathing as the biggest issue (and it is, naturally). But it also suggests use for two major symptoms. A friend of mine went back and forth on what a major rash, or major vomiting, means. It IS hard to quantify those things. But I can tell you that this cashew rash certainly qualified. Her entire body, not just the fingers that held the bar, or the area around her mouth, was covered in red blotches. And we spent a longer time in the bathroom for (a single episode of) vomiting than for something like the flu, so that could qualify too.

    When I pressed the ER doc about whether it was "right" to use or not use the Epi, and whether I should use it if anything returned, he found the grey area, also. Bottom line: it's never, at school age, bad to use the pen when you're unsure. But there are also a lot of emergent/urgent allergy reactions that aren't going to "need" it. The pen in this case would have bought us a ride to the ER and about 10 minutes or so of a paused reaction. That time is ESSENTIAL to save a life when breathing is involved. We just got lucky.

    (If you're interested in checking out the card, I highly suggest making up your own version with your allergist and child and then walking through scenarios like this one to see what someone could or should do.)
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    • Allergy Superheroes
      Thank you for taking us through your ordeal. First, glad (both of you) are okay! Second, happy that it sounds like (at least on paper) that you're noThank you for taking us through your ordeal. First, glad (both of you) are okay! Second, happy that it sounds like (at least on paper) that you're not beating yourself up for giving her cashews. We try our best as parents and sometimes mistakes happen, it does happen to all of us. Since this was at the beginning of the school year, the rest of it should be a piece of allergy friendly cake!  More ...
    • Nicole at food allergy pantry
      On paper, I'm definitely in a good mental place; in reality, I'm still striving to stay there. It seems that 1 week is the amount of time it takes (meOn paper, I'm definitely in a good mental place; in reality, I'm still striving to stay there. It seems that 1 week is the amount of time it takes (me, at least) to not think "Oh, I almost lost all of this" every time I look at my girl!

      But, as you said, it's so often parents to whom this happens, because we are the primary feeders/caregivers. I tell this to so many other parents when I speak that it would be disingenuous to keep it to myself when I do it, too. It's truly a learning experience---whether it's an ingredient change on a label, a reaction that was supposed to be "gone," simply an oversight in a busy life. It means we now know more about how she really reacts, after nearly a decade without any nut ingestion at all. More knowledge isn't bad, even though the learning method definitely was!

      I'm not systematic about it, but I really do want to encourage food allergy families---especially new ones---to accept and discuss things like mistakes, anxiety, needing accessible real-life nutrition/social support that doesn't always come from an MD's office, etc.

      Thanks for all that you do to help members of the community!
        More ...
    • Allergy Superheroes
      Thank you for all that you do and again for sharing your experiences. I think it does help to show that nobody is perfect, even a SuperMom like yourseThank you for all that you do and again for sharing your experiences. I think it does help to show that nobody is perfect, even a SuperMom like yourself! Life is a constant learning experience and it does give your daughter a better understanding of what she could go through and she's a little wiser now for the future. It's all about preparing her for life in the future.

      Keep on striving and know you are a part of an amazing community full of love and support and recipes to help!
        More ...
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  •   Pure and Peanut Free liked this post about 6 days ago
    Oh look, I figured out a simple thing like how to change my username to match my blog AND still use my first name!
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  • Nicole at food allergy pantry
    Nicole at food allergy pantry joined the group, Severe Food Allergies
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  • Nicole at food allergy pantry
    Nicole at food allergy pantry liked the Dible, Top 8-free
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    Nicole at food allergy pantry updated her profile
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